AMI Post-Show Booth Reports

By The National Provisioner Staff

The 2007 AMI Show has come and gone, and once again, exhibitors put on their best wares, unveiled new technologies and equipment and wowed the crowds with the latest innovations from their development departments. What follows is just a sample of the myriad booths and exhibits at this year’s show at McCormick Place in Chicago. If you weren’t there, here’s some of the highlights you missed:
Alcan Packaging introduced a multitude of innovations at the AMI Show, including new seal technology for marinated meats, the new Torpedo® chub film, ClearShield bone-in shrink bags for retail applications and new CMD LaserTear® scoring technology.
AmTrade Systems and Schroter Technologie showed the Schröter line of smokehouses, steamcook cabinets, blast chillers, continuous cooking systems, SEMIjet systems, smoke generators, air scrubbers and control systems. The company highlighted its smoke generator systems, pointing out that 300 were in operation in the U.S. market. The most popular Schröter generators at the show were the R91 and RH model.
A full range of food processing garment and hygiene solutions was on display at the Aramark Uniform Services booth. Featured, however, was Aramark’s Total HACCP Solution, through which processors can be assured that product quality and service excellence standards are met when they work with Aramark, based on the company’s own strict set of in-house Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures and HACCP-trained employees.
B.A.G. Corp. featured its revolutionary bulk package, the Combo-BAG® container, for the handling, transport and storage of food products without the use of wood, metal and corrugated materials. Also, B.A.G. Corp. had Winlon® Interleaver cut sheets, wrap and sheeting on display in its booth. Winlon is a high-quality, inexpensive paper alternative that is resistant to fats, grease, oil, acids and alkalies, is microwaveable, and can protect foods against freezer burn.
Beacon Inc. displayed its range of processing trucks and wire screens. The IT-100 Insta-Press Pressing Truck presses product from up to t inches diameter to the exact same thickness on all levels. The pressing truck keeps uniform spring tension on the product throughout the entire pressing cycle.
Bizerba featured its GLM-I High Speed Weigh-Price-Labeler and its LDI 160 Fully-Automatic Label Dispenser at the show. The GLM-I is service- and user-friendly, and features a hygienic design in a high-performance machine, capable of handling up to 150 packages per minute. The LDI 160 is an automatic dispenser that can be integrated into the GLM-I.
BK Giulini allowed attendees to sample coarse-ground sausage that featured its BRIFISOL® brine phosphate product. The company’s experience and know-how allow processors to obtain excellent solubility in the brine, better distribution of the brine in the meat, an optimum extraction of muscle protein, increased waterbinding capacity and optimum cohesion when slicing, when using BK Giulini products.
With the acquisition of Cove Oven Systems and the development of Total Flow Control in patent-pending processes for assuring a consistent cooking environment throughout the entire cabinet, Carruthers Equipment Co. offers the Cove Smokehouse Series of batch ovens. They offer improvements in performance, yields, hygiene and serviceability.
The new Sprint™ Automated Protein Analyzer, which provides an accurate protein test in minutes without the use of harsh chemicals or high heat, was introduced by CEM Corporation. The compact, easy-to-use system utilizes an advanced protein-tagging technology that is AOAC and AACC-approved for many food products. Sprint is unique because it only tags protein and its results are not affected by non-protein sources of nitrogen.
During the AMI Show, CFS launched the CFS PowerCure. This massaging machine enables ham producers to improve product quality at reduced processing time via a newly developed massaging technology. Specially designed paddles on the CFS PowerCure ensure a gentle and dynamic massage technique and an efficient process. The result is 20-70 percent time reduction and reduced costs in handling, savings in cold storage and energy.
The new Computerway Food Systems P-6 is a versatile multi-purpose human-machine interface device designed for washdown environments. The P-6, can be used with Computerway’s WOLF, Process Tracking and Quality Control systems to view or manipulate crucial system information on the production floor, replacing scanners, PCs and other devices as a low-cost, efficient tool.
Cook King Inc. showed its new dual-zone, patented Cook King Broiler/Oven, complete with internal front-end searing burners and a built-in brander to apply grill marks to the product. Cooking is achieved by a combination of convection, impingement and steam, allowing for complete flexibility in achieving desired color, flavor, texture and yield.
The new Marinade on Demand package from Sealed Air’s Cryovac Food Solutions combined marinade and fresh mead in a single package, though they remain in separate pockets until the user is ready to marinate and cook. It is a two-part, thermoformed rollstock package that separates fresh meat from a marinade.
The new Form-Tite™ formable shrink films from Curwood were on display. Form-Tite films, developed in cooperation with Multivac, maximize the equipment’s potential to triple productivity and lower total costs compared to rotary chamber shrink systems. Curwood’s Form-Tite films provide better gloss and clarity, as well as higher shrink, than competitive films, creating tight, crystal-clear packages that deliver a superior branded presentation in the meat or dairy case.
Dorner promoted its wide range of conveyor solutions at the show, including the 7600 Ultimate Series with ThermoDrive® Belting, which can save processors precious time and valuable resources in both system maintenance and sanitation. Combined, the 7600 Ultimate Series and Mol Industries’ ThermoDrive® Belting are the only modular conveyor system to carry the USDA‘s Red Meat and Poultry Equipment Acceptance certificate.
Ecolab spent its time at the AMI Show promoting Octave™ FS — a single-part, visible, wet foam that requires no rinse step and allows for reduced water usage. It is effective against pathogenic and spoilage organisms as listed on the product label, and removes inorganic and mineral soils on equipment due to lower pH. It penetrates cracks and crevices and increases the shine on stainless steel as well.
FMC FoodTech announced that its JSO III Direct Gas Jet Stream® Oven is now available for product testing in the company’s technology and training center in Sandusky, Ohio. Also, FMC FoodTech featured its DSI 612 Pork Belly Processing System, which uses a DSI vision system and water jets to trim pork bellies, helping to minimize labor costs and safety issues, as well as cross-contamination issues
Food Quality Sensor International, Inc. introduced its new smart sensor label that senses spoilage in fresh meat and poultry products. SensorQ™ is applied to the inside wrap of the package and detects foodborne bacteriological levels right inside the package. When the bacteria count in the package builds to a critical level, the label turns from orange to tan to indicate spoilage.
The new PowerMax4000™ from Formax offers processors a slicing system with up to four fully independent product drives to better accommodate product variations, minimize giveaway and maximize yields in high-volume slicing operations. Its slicing capacity is the largest in the industry and can produce stacked, shingled and shaved products.
Foss was running demonstrations of its Meat Master, its latest generation of fat/lean-detection equipment. The unit can run up to 40,000 pounds per hour and uses X-rays to measure the amount of fat in the meat. It can also detect metal and bone in product.
Framarx/Waxstar had samples of its many types of patty wax paper for use in all types of hamburger patty machines. The company follows Good Manufacturing Practices audited by the American Institute of Baking. Framarx currently has a certification of superior from AIB.
The NS80-1 smoke generator was on display at the Friedrich Metal Products booth, as was a mock-up of its double-wide smokehouse including cones for air supply. The company believes cones and ducts in the smokehouse are a better way to ensure an even temperature throughout the smokehouse. A control system with Juno microprocessor was also available for attendees to see.
G&K Services announced its new antimicrobial-charged garments and towels, BioSmart, an enhancement to its ProSura Food Safety Solutions program. BioSmart is a patent-pending textile technology that binds chlorine molecules to the surface of the fabric, which will continue to kill germs after the fabric has been washed.
FDA-compliant sanitary pumps were featured at the Graco booth. The company’s line of pumps are ideal for food-related applications requiring high flow rates and portability. Graco’s Sanitary Poultry Pump also was featured, and it is an air-operated diaphragm pump that can handle solids up to six inches in circumference and easily transfers necks, gizzards, livers, hearts, feet and blood slurries.
Grote displayed all of the components needed to make a complete sandwich line. The Bread Feeder can feed individual slices of bread from a manually loaded conveyor. The SNP-505 Slicer slices and applies product slices directly onto a moving target, and the Volumetric Depositor can deposit liquids, such as condiments. The Sandwich Assembly Conveyor and Sandwich Cutter complete the line.
Handtmann introduced the 670 Whole Muscle Ham Stuffer at the show, which represented the machine’s American debut. The company also showed the ConPro system, an extrusion system that uses alginate gel. The equipment extrudes, cuts and collates sausage to be ready to be packaged. The system can control the thickness of the gel to a quarter of a percent accuracy.
Hawkins Liquid Food Ingredients featured its line of products that allows processors to reduce sodium without negatively affecting the finished products’ taste. Included in that line are MAK LAC KS G, a potassium lactate/sodium diacetate blend that provides lower sodium in processed meats with LITE salt, but without the bitter flavor. Also featured were Hawkins’ UltraLac line of liquid salts, which can enhance the safety of RTE meats.
Uniform heating allows Heat and Control’s AirForce‚ impingement oven to cook many meat, poultry and seafood products up to twice as fast as comparable impingement ovens. Also on display was the gas-fired Rotary Brander continuously sears grill marks on the top, bottom, or both sides of formed and natural products. The new Ishida multi-head weigher, designed to accurately weigh fresh chicken parts, reduces product giveaway and takes less than half the space of in-line weighing systems.
Henry and Sons demonstrated its capacity for producing parts for many of the pieces of equipment used by processors in the industry. The company can handle parts orders and refurbishment of equipment. All of the equipment is made of solid stainless steel.
Hollymatic celebrated its 75th year at the show, displaying its original hamburger patty machine next to its modern descendents. Those include the 710-45 model with automatic feeding, model 865 with Roto Flow fill system, Portion Pro 320 — which is the newest addition to the Hollymatic line — and the full line of mixer/grinders. The Model 190 Automatic Feeder Grinder and Model 300 were also on display.
The Intralox SeamFree™ family of belts is designed to enhance sanitation efficiency by conserving the time and water used for sanitation. The line includes belts that use 66 percent fewer hinges for increased cleaning access, as well as belts with a smaller pitch, featuring 75 percent fewer hinges for thorough and faster cleaning.
Jarvis Products Corp. showed its JR-50 robotic arms and model 3-HD Head Dropper. The company also released the 30CL Hock Cutter at the show. The robotic arms are capable of lifting 110 pounds per payload. The machinery is protected by an airtight seal and a stainless-steel base. All three machines use standard Jarvis hand tools and have a pressurized jacket to prevent condensation problems.
At the Kerry Ingredients booth, attendees saw an all-natural, deli-style turkey that was naturally cured with Kerry’s patented standardized one-step natural cure solution, featuring natural seasonings, flavors and smoke, and drizzled with a natural cranberry chipotle sauce. Naturally cured cocktail links featuring Kerry’s new Campfire Smoke signature flavor were also featured.
MADO Frozen Block Grinders were on display at the Koch Equipment booth. With the ability to grind both fresh and frozen product, this equipment is designed for very heavy-duty industrial production. Koch also showed its vacuum stuffing and linking lines along with the MAP Tray Sealer and package and film labelers.
Marel Food Systems showed the ProLine Grater, one of its newest grating machines, at the show. The ProLine can operate at speeds up to 200 pieces a minute with one-gram accuracy. It has multiple discharge arms and is available for up to 24 stations on the line. Single-sided or double-sided, it can batch by count or weight. The M3000 controller offers remote support. The systems use Intralox belts to eliminate the problem of belt tracking. Open-frame construction allows for easy cleaning.
Marlen Research Corp. displayed information and details on four of its product lines: Opti Series pumps, Smart Technology items, blast cells and doors for cells, ovens and smokehouses. Each “smart wall” display featured animations, renderings and physical displays of the equipment described in the multimedia presentations. One highlight in particular was Marlen’s Smart Tech Hard Hats, which allow for a mechanic to communicate with support while working on equipment and blast cells.
Mepaco of Beaver Dam, Wis., highlighted three items, two for cooking and one for grinding. The 170 ThermaBlend is a batch processor developed for large-scale cooking. The company’s continuous cooker is designed for pizza crumbles, meatballs, shrimp and portioned meats. The Model 7-7 Meat Grinder was made to enhance production rates.
At the Mettler-Toledo booth, attendees learned specifics on several pieces of equipment, including the HDS Pipeline Metal Detector, and the AdvanChek and AdvanChekPlus X-ray Inspection systems. The HDS Pipeline is designed for full integration with leading vacuum fillers in sausage manufacturing applications, while the AdvanChek and AdvanChekPlus deliver X-ray detection performance with the ease-of-operation found with a metal detector.
Mol Industries manufactures ThermoDrive Sprocket Driven Hygienic Belting — a homogeneous, extruded, thermoplastic conveyor belt that is positive driven with standard sprockets with NO HINGES! If you use conveyors to move product in your plant, ThermoDrive will allow you to SPEND LESS MONEY on water usage and treatment, sanitation and maintenance labor. Also, ThermoDrive has no niches/crevices to harbor bacteria, pins/modules to break, or trings/fabric plies to fray or wick, positively impacting your food safety.
MP Equipment Company showed off its Servo Simple Former. The machine has a stainless-steel frame, and electrical panels are double sealed. The former can be easily cleaned and sanitized, and extra-large servo actuators take the place of hydraulics in forming the product.
Multisorb Technologies presents the FreshPax® CR system for low-oxygen modified atmosphere packaging. The system extends shelf life of case-ready meats up to 30 days, double that of comparable packaging alternatives, while preserving color. It enables meat producers to expand distribution networks and offer branded, display-ready products to a broader range of retailers.
Multivac has launched a new line of form-fill-seal systems. The high-performance R535 is equipped with a clean-in-place system, which automates the cleaning of component groups inside the machine. Along with being a fast and reliable thermoformer, it comes with IPC control systems for seamless integration with upstream and downstream packaging line components.
Niroflex showed its product line of metal mesh gloves and garments. Its Niroflex 2000 glove features a stainless steel closure at the base of the glove rather than the typical, less hygienic nylon strap. The all-metal closure is easier to clean and sanitize.
NuTEC Mfg.’s 710 Forming Machine offers speed, productconsistency and versatility. It provides excellent weight control and gentle product handling for a variety of products from beef to vegetables. It can form hamburger patties, meatballs, skinless sausage links and many more items. It operates with minimal wear and maintenance.
Orics Industries had a working version of its packaging system running throughout the show at its booth. All of the company’s packaging solutions are made entirely with American-produced parts to make it easier for maintenance personnel to find parts when necessary and with an eye to improving the bottom line.
PBI-Dansensor presented its process facility using MAP packaging monitoring equipment. The display showed everything from the ability of the customer to specify the gas mix in the packaging, to the finished product at the end of the line. Full quality control and documentation can be achieved throughout the process.
Poly-Clip had the ICA-SL at the show. The machine makes putting a loop behind the clip on a packaged meat product an automatic process, rather than manual. The loops can handle weights in excess of 30 pounds. The company also introduced the servo-drive MCA line. The line uses touch-panel control and RFID technology and can produce sausages at up to 160 cycles per second.
Presto Products Co. offers Fresh-Lock™ containers in a variety of sizes, including packages designed for making bacon or processed meat stand out on a shelf. The bacon container can be custom sized for slab and shingle pack bacon, as well as hot dogs, sausage links, sausage patties or beef sticks.
Reiser offers a complete line of Holac Dicers that can cube, strip, slice and flake a variety of products. They feature an automatic pre-press system to ensure absolute cube uniformity for fresh meats. Easily changed cutting grids offer portion sizes ranging from 3mm to 60mm with production rates of 500 – 10,000 lbs. per hour.
Red Arrow Products’ NuGen™ collagen products are a new addition to its Performance Technology™ line. NuGen combines the company’s experience in meat-based process systems with rapidly emerging co-extrusion technologies. With the company’s new flavors and browning technology, processors can customize flavor and texture profiles for a range of co-extruded sausage products.
Risco USA Inc. displayed its whole-muscle vacuum stuffer and its gel system. The gel system utilizes an alginate gel that can be applied to any meat product. Risco also represented Double D Engineering, which featured a gas-fired oven in the booth.
New for this year’s AMI Show was Rollstock’s RSS-300 high-performance vacuum packaging machine. Sales on this piece of equipment are slated to begin in 2008, and it features a stainless-steel washdown design, speeds up to 25 cycles per minute, Mitsubishi microprocessor controls and a servo-controlled drive system, among other features.
SFK America’s new Type 16 meat and bacon press is the fastest press available, with 16 strokes per minute. Frozen meat is molded in the hydraulically operated press section by means of a die set. It molds the meat three-dimensionally by pressing from four directions rather than three.
Eagle™ FA advanced fat analysis X-ray systems were on display at the Smiths Detection booth. The Eagle Bulk FA 720 provides real-time feedback on up to 160 tons of bulk meat per hour at approximately twice the speed of systems currently on the market. In batch or continuous processing, the system (which was designed using AMI’s Sanitary guidelines) can provide CL, weight and foreign-object data under tight control.
Speco Inc., a manufacturer of underplates and knives for all makes of processing equipment, debuted its new bone-collection system, which gathers undesirable material in the meat and migrates it to the center to be removed through processing. The plates can be customized for individual customer needs. CFD parts are also a new product this year.
Stellar unveiled for the first time at the show its new name and logo. The company changed its name from “The Stellar Group” to “Stellar,” and adopted a new positioning message, “Taking Solutions Further” — which demonstrates that Stellar is not just a design/build firm. Stellar is now fully integrated, providing food and beverage manufacturers design, engineering, construction and mechanical services.
Stork’s ValueDrum in-line marinating and massaging system does away with the need for many product-handling operations surrounding a traditional marinating process. By adapting the principle of working in-line with small batches, the ValueDrum works more efficiently than traditional tumblers, reduces product damage and the chance for bacterial contamination.
Summit Hill Flavors was on hand at the AMI Show, promoting the fact that the USDA has approved its MinPro line of flavors to be used in natural meat and poultry products. All meat- and poultry-based flavors produced by Summit Hill Flavors are manufactured under continuous USDA inspection and will bear a USDA approved label.
Tipper Tie introduced its WM Netter, which is designed to automatically net one or more whole-muscle sections at one time. It utilizes a breech load so that the operator only has to place and orient the sections, and it can net up to 10 pieces per minute.
Townsend’s DMM-70 Meat Harvesting Machine offers the right amount of gentle movement and pressure to ensure the highest quality possible. Bones of a specific size are fed from a pre-sizer into the hopper, where they are gently compressed. Meat is released from the bones and discharged through pipes.
Treif displayed a variety of slicers and dicers. The products they brought to WWFE included dicers like the Felix, Argon, Twister SP, Divider 440 slicer, the Divider 660, the Puma F/FB, Falcon Conti and Zebra slicer. All of the products come with a focus on reducing waste of product and energy and maintaining hygiene.
Tufco Industrial Flooring had samples of its range of its floor systems, which are seamless, non-porous, multi-layered, corrosion-resistant, constructions composed of laminated, custom-blended resin compounds and aggregates. Tufco floors last longer and require less repair time than other floors and are USDA- and OSHA-accepted.
Unitherm offers the Yieldmaster Spiral Ovens, which feature steam, roast or combination cooking with high-temperature performance. The ovens pack hundreds of feet of continuous cooking surface into a compact footprint. The Compact Series can cook from 500 to 3,000 pounds an hour, while the Ultracap Series cooks 3,000 to 10,000 pounds an hour.
Protective wall and flooring systems were on display at the Valspar Flooring booth at the AMI Show. Valspar’s seamless flooring systems are heavy-duty, easy-to-clean surfaces that stand up to thermal, chemical and acid shock and feature a built-in antimicrobial that extends the useful life of the floors. Its Descoglas® reinforced ceiling and wall coatings complete the hygienic envelope and are easy to clean and high-performance as well.
Viskase Companies featured two new products. One of those products was Viscoat, a combination of a plastic casing and paper that can transfer colors and flavors to meat. The second was Viskase’s multilayer shrink bags, for use with a wide variety of processed meats, from ribs to deli meat chubs.
Volk Enterprises featured the Pop Up® Disposable Cooking Thermometer, the most accurate and reliable temperature-indicating device of its kind. It has a patented design and uses 100 percent organic firing materials inside the device, meaning no questionable products are in contact with the food.
Volta Belting demonstrated samples of its thermoplastic belting at the AMI Show. Volta has developed a line of positive-drive products to replace the modular belt products currently in use at many facilities. The company says the products address customer concerns on hygiene and water consumption.
The main stars of the Weber booth were products from the robotics division, including the whole-muscle slicing system, the 904 and the log peeler. The whole-muscle slicer was developed to measure whole-muscle products in 40 drafts a minute. The log peeler is designed to take a casing log, remove the casing and pass it through the slicer without intervention. It can handle up to five logs in the system.
Weiler Food Processing Systems showcased a variety of grinders from the Dominator series. The models on display included models 11 Grinder, 14 Pre-Grinder, 14SF Self-feeding Grinder, 16 BG Frozen Block Grinder, MG 14 Conversion Unit and the MB14/360B Mixer Grinder. All were made to maintain a balanced flow of product.
The ClimaSeries™ line of products was featured by Weyerhaeuser during the show, including ClimaGuard™ Containerboard, ClimaCoat™ Barriers, AquaSafe™ Containers and ClimaProof™ Boxes. ClimaSeries recyclable wax replacement products provide superior performance throughout the cold chain and fit within the parameters of current equipment and processes throughout the supply chain, including cooling and handling.
Zero-Loc displayed its Factory Laminated Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) panels, which can be factory-bonded to the company’s EPS insulated wall panels for increased scratch and dent resistance within the plant. FRP also protects the EPS panels from the frequent, often rigorous washdowns required in a processing plant’s sanitary environment, and they can be applied at a minimum recommended height of four feet to the full height of the panels.